All night the sound had
come back again,
and again falls
this quiet, persistent rain. . . .
— Robert Creeley, from “The Rain“
Much better. After the first rain or two, everything seemed almost sparkly.
Below (click on any of the thumbnails in the gallery) is a little tour of the borders along the upper and lower lawns, taken on September 11 — just before sunset — and yesterday afternoon.
I think this will be my slightly early Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day and Foliage Follow-Up submission for September. Please go to May Dreams Gardens (Bloom Day on September 15) and Digging (Foliage Follow-Up on September 16) to see what’s happening in other Garden Bloggers’ gardens.
The green of life requires blue. . .*
At the front of our house, in two curvy planting beds, the Evolvulus ‘Blue Sapphire’ is thick and blooming heavily — in the morning.
By early afternoon, the flowers close up, and I’m left with just a small-leaved, grey-green ground cover — which is still pretty nice.
(Above: that’s a pink-blooming crape myrtle tree to the left, doing so-so — I’m going to give it a light pruning pretty soon and see if it will fill out a bit.)
I planted out little sprigs of the evolvulus last July. This open area used to be occupied by a large Norfolk pine. However, it was dying (see here; sixth photo) and had to be cut down.
I’m not very happy with the grass and stone arrangement on the left side of the center planting area (below). It looks rather ragged. One of these days, I plan to remove the turf grass (I really like to have a wee bit of Round-Up) and plant mondo grass between the stones — as well as take up a few stones and add a two or three mounding plants.
Below, the blooms of Evolvulus ‘Blue Sapphire’ are a true blue. It is a tropical plant, hardy to U.S. zones 8-11.
(Click on any of the photos to enlarge them or on ‘Continue reading’ below to scroll through all the bigger images.)
Below, I’ve also used it to edge the planting border along the upper lawn in front of the terrace. (A plan of our garden is here.)
Below is the same border from the other direction, standing at the center steps. (The red-flowering shrub/vine at the end is a Mussaenda erythrophylla.)
Below, the border continues on the left side of the steps. The tall yellow flowers are double Rudbeckia laciniata.
Below, the zinnias in our cutting garden (from last month’s GBBD) continue to be beautiful. The tall grass in the back is lemongrass.
To see what’s blooming in other garden bloggers’ gardens today, check out May Dreams Gardens.
Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day is the 15th of every month.
To see what’s blooming for other garden bloggers today, visit Carol of May Dreams Gardens, who hosts the monthly Bloom Day.
It’s 97° right now (noon) in D.C. and expected to get to 102° today.
What’s holding up well in my new garden? The goldenrod ‘Firecracker’ for one. Not yet blooming, of course, but the foliage is absolutely sprightly, I would say. Such a great plant!
All the ornamental grasses look good, even the two miscanthus that are still sitting in their pots waiting to be planted after 6 weeks. My lamb’s ear looks great (I have the old-fashioned variety that flowers wildly; it’s messy, but I like it). The Rudbeckia laciniata is green and upright, but the leaves are drooping a little. My two little rosebushes (‘Cinco de Mayo’ and some small apricot David Austin) and a mature weigela with burgundy-tinged leaves (came with the garden) also actually look fresh.
My almost 12-year-0ld dog, Sophie, keeps wanting to stay outside and lie on the warm stone walkway or the deck. I’m wondering if it feels good to her touch of arthritis. I make her come in after 15-20 minutes, though, so the Animal Cops don’t show up.
What’s not fresh looking is the bigleaf hydrangeas and a still-unidentified viburnum (also from the old owners). They wilt at a look. I think they may both go at the end of the summer and be replaced by oak leaf hydrandreas (both regular and dwarf). I passed one yesterday evening that had toasted-looking blooms (still pretty), but still upright stems and leaves.
Also, try to remember how long and cold last winter was.